Our Younger Generation Can't Write Anymore!

Discussion in 'Education & Learning' started by Yvonne Smith, Jan 31, 2015.

  1. Bobby Cole

    Bobby Cole Very Well-Known Member
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    I think I will have to weigh in on the subject just one more time.

    While I was watching the news tonight they showed a hand written apology from A-Rod to his fans. It was in script and easily read. Then it hit me. I can read it! The reason I can read it is because I was taught how to write it.
    If you do not know how to write in the cursive style, how can you read it? There are of course, some of the letters that look almost like the printed version, but over all, there are enough differences that the untrained reader would have a difficult time.

    The full impact might make itself known when a group of present day students might perchance have the opportunity to see our Declaration of Independence, or the Magna Carta. "See," would be the operative word here because "read" is almost a thing of the past. Okay, so you can get a printed version. Isn't it kind of like getting the information second hand? When I read something important I like to read the original,if it is possible, and am never content until I do. Why? Because I can. I hate it when I have to say, "I do not know how!!"
     
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    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
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  2. John Stone

    John Stone Member
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    Good points. Actually I never considered that some people could read print, but not cursive writing. Maybe so. For instance, I do know that in some foreign languages I have an easy time reading the modern print versions, but it's still difficult to read the older (hundreds of years) versions with archaic type fonts and slightly different spellings.
     
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  3. Helene Lawson

    Helene Lawson Active Member
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    The reason why most of the teenager nowadays can't write is because they don't read books except from school lectures and that's why they can't write properly. It's very sad to come across such things. :(
     
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  4. Yvonne Smith

    Yvonne Smith Very Well-Known Member
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    While I do imagine that not reading very much does have an effect on one's writing abilities in general; I don't actually see where it has much to do with the topic of this thread, which is that schools no longer are teaching penmanship to children in grade school.
    We learned how to print letters in the first year of school, even as we were learning how to read. However, by the time that they actually taught us cursive writing, reading was already a basic skill.
    Regardless of how many books that I did or did not read after that; I knew how to write in cursive. If penmanship was not taught, we would have only been able to print letters, which is all that many of the young people of today can do.
     
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  5. Fran Jensen

    Fran Jensen New Member
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    Well SOMEONE out there was taught to write cursive. Are they our generation only?
    Because when our generation dies out, will there be archaeologists who will be the only ones to interpret our "archaic" legacies? Is our cursive leavings going to be laboriously pored over to decipher what it says? Are our cursive writings going to be considered the modern day hieroglyphics? Will our cursive become the same as Latin--a dead language?
    Who is it that is going to translate and save it and print it out to the digital world? Will our cursives be lovingly stored in museums, behind special glass and in climate controlled environments?
    If our posts were preserved and presented to a university class 50 yrs hence, would any of them even understand what these rants refer to?
     
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  6. John Donovan

    John Donovan Active Member
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    I disagree, as the school system in Romania still teaches cursive writing, and quite thoroughly, for that. I also think that if the school doesn't teach them, the parents can take responsibility, and teach their child cursive writing, especially as it's a very important skill.
     
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  7. Sheryll Green

    Sheryll Green New Member
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    I agree with your post Yvonne. The state of of current generation and the basic things they don't know how to do is rather sad. Ask them to do something with a computer or phone and "Shazam" it's a done deal but ask them to read a document and sign and what you'll get is unknown. I worked in a testing center at a community college and I actually had to teach a few students how to fill out a return envelope for their test scores to be mailed to them. I used to think "am I really on a college campus"? If they aren't on a phone or a computer these kids seem to be lost. It is really sad and perhaps it speaks to the state of nation.
     
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  8. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    It will be interesting to see how the non-writers will be able to get a passport. And if they do know how to write their name good luck on doing any business, even a bank transfer without a basic knowledge. It may be no body left behind in the school, but not in the real world!
     
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  9. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    In addition to the things mentioned above, I've noticed that many younger people these days appear to be unfamiliar with the written word, and, since they're used to having heard but not seen words, they use incorrect ones. Not too long ago, I saw someone post 'little own', in place of 'let alone', which confused me, until I finally figured it out.
     
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  10. Molly Fenster

    Molly Fenster New Member
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    And it's getting worse by the minute. Just think about it, what if the next generations can't talk at all? There's definitely some food for thought.
     
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  11. Hannah Davis

    Hannah Davis Active Member
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    Well, its nice to know I am no alone in this regard. But then this is the curse of those of us who are left handed. Cursive writing wasn't designed for those who are left handed that's obvious. All thorough grade school I had teachers thrash me for having horrible cursive writing, yet I couldn't help it because I was left handed, no matter how hard I tried to improve it I couldn't. Eventually I was allowed ot print my reports if I didn't type them. I hated learning to do cursive writing but it did have a purpose. After all, I do know how to sign my name.

    I realize that this is the age of technology and kids are learning how to print then how to type. But I still think they should at least learn how to do write their name in cursive writing. This is something that we are required to do in life give our signanture. Cursive writing may have more ore less become obsolete but the signature hasn't.
     
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  12. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    I am left-handed and it's safe to say that I am not the neatest writer in the world. My father (born in 1911) was left-handed and he was forced to write with his right hand, something that we, at least, are spared these days.

    I know only one person that I could describe as a neat left-handed writer. Not just neat handwriting, but beautifully stylish and ornate with it. I'm not sure how he does it, especially since he often uses a fountain pen. If that was me, there'd be ink all over the place.

    One thing that us lefties can console ourselves with is that we are usually much more adept at doing things with our right hands that right-handers are with their left!
     
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  13. Ina I. Wonder

    Ina I. Wonder Very Well-Known Member
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    Hannah,
    I too morn the loss of cursive writing, although mine is atrocious. As a child, I spent hours each day trying to develope just a readable cursive handwritng, but that just wasn't to be. So I wasn't surprised when the teacher kept tell me that she couldn't even tell if I knew how to write.

    When I was 18, I took a shorthand course at our local county library. After about a third of the way through the course, I was totally failing. Just about the times I came to the conclusion that dropping out would be better than carrying an F on my record, the teacher quit.

    I went to the new teacher to explain that I was going to drop the course, and as a good teacher will, she asked me why. After explaining my problem, the new teacher reminded me that we hadn't even gotten to transcribing shorthand yet. She said she graded the course by how accurately each student could replicate the speaker's spoken words, and how well we could gramatically transcribe it word for word.

    I ended the course with an A.
     
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  14. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    I was given something of a surprise yesterday on two counts. Firstly, I received a telephone call from a journalist on a local paper, who wanted to interview me about a book I've just had published. My second surprise - I'm not sure quite why I felt surprised - was that when she turned up, she wrote the notes of the interview in shorthand. I suppose that seemed such an old-fashioned art form.
     
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  15. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    I was not aware that people even used shorthand any more. Last year I transcribed an entire book for one of my clients from mp3's. Out of curiosity I went to wiki and found an interesting article on it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shorthand
     
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  16. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    I didn't look closely at the notes she was taking, but there were lots of squiggles and I would guess that it was probably Pitman. I suppose one advantage for a journalist is that the interviewee is unlikely to notice if he or she writes, "This fellow is a prize idiot".
     
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  17. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    May I ask about the book? LOL, guess I don't have to ask permission as I just did (coffee time)!
     
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  18. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    It's about my experiences working as a VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) volunteer in Eritrea. I was there for two years and had kept a diary every day, so I thought I should put my notes to good use!
     
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  19. Ina I. Wonder

    Ina I. Wonder Very Well-Known Member
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    Tom, great job. I admire you for your contribution to the literary world. I'm told that I should write a book, but I don't have the right organazation skills. And then there is the point that I feel that a book should contribute to society. I'm not too sure my story would.

    Until Feburary 2014, I read at least 7 to 10 hours a day. My son and I would take a set of books, read them, and then discuss the ins and outs of each story. Now it just isn't the same, but I do keep trying. It just seems as if I already know the stories before I finish the second or third chapter, so I'll quit reading that book. I haven't finished more than three books since.
     
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  20. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    Thanks...I'll leave others to judge the literary merits (or otherwise) of my book, but I have to say that I enjoyed writing it. In a sense, it was already done, as I had the diaries to refer to. It was a case of putting everything into a sensible and logical order (and cutting out a few of the libellous things I'd said about people).
     
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  21. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    Thanks, Tom! I imagine it should be very interesting to read. I never even knew the existence of Eritrea. Since we can not be commercial on the forum, please "conversation" me with some details on how I can order a copy!
     
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  22. Tom Locke

    Tom Locke Very Well-Known Member
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    Richard, if you have a look at the thread 'In My Life I Have Lived Many Places', there is a link to Amazon and my book. I hasten to add that Ken gave me permission to post it there, so I don't want to push my luck by posting it again!
     
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  23. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    Thanks, I will check it out.
     
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  24. Jennifer Graves

    Jennifer Graves Active Member
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    I think it's horrible that they aren't teaching cursive writing. I use it whenever I write instead of type. What happens when I have to leave a note telling someone the world is about blow up, and their only chance to survive is to eat a banana. I could even set the banana next to the note. But the school decided cursive wasn't important, so the person I left the note for can't read it, and dies.
     
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  25. Diane Lane

    Diane Lane Very Well-Known Member
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    Ina, I think your story would be fascinating to read.
     
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